In all the excitement of launching the virtual church, I have not forgotten the discussion on charisms. Charisms are your own personal magic, rather God’s magic working through you. Charisms are the uniquely creative way in which you have been gifted to find meaning and purpose in your life and through which you will find fulfillment in contributing to the betterment of our world. Read Part 4 on the “forgotten charism” HERE. Read Part 3 on faith, giving and healing HERE. Read Part 2 on discernment, encouragement and evangelism HERE. And read Part 1 HERE, and introduction into charisms. Today, we will explore the charisms of helps, hospitality, intercessory prayer and knowledge.
The Charism of Helps
Those who possess the charism of helps are usually hanging out in the wings or content to be in the background as their call is to be a source of support in empowering the success of one particular individual. They are the person who is content to be unknown (in a sense) because they truly, and enthusiastically, live for the sake of another’s success. We all know men and women empowered with this charism. I think of some mothers I know who are authentically called and are enlivened by the things they do for the sake of their children. They are content to be stay-at-home moms and love every minute of it. I also think of many of the church secretaries I have worked with who are truly content in the way in which they are able to make (usually) the priest successful. I think of an administrator I know who says, “My job is to make him look good.” The difference between unhealthy enabling and helps is that the person helping is enlivened and fulfilled in the work they are doing toward another’s success. Those who are enablers are drained by the work they are doing and often resentful.
The Charism of Hospitality
The charism of hospitality is a communal charism, meaning that it is centered on making others feel welcome. Hospitality, in this light, is specifically directed toward providing food, shelter and friendship. Those with the charism of hospitality are especially sensitive to the presence of strangers or newcomers and their needs and are compelled to work toward the fulfillment of those needs. They are energized and enlivened by the presence of guests and joyfully welcome those unexpected. At their table, there is always room for one (or 10) more.
The Charism of Intercessory Prayer
In speaking of this charism, I can’t help but think of my sister, Dana Lumby. Dana is magic in her employment of intercessory prayer and through the time and attention she gives to praying for the needs of others, miraculous things have come to pass. This is the mark of one gifted with the charism of intercessory prayer – not only are they (seemingly) irresistibly drawn to the desire to pray for others, their prayers effect miraculous change.
The Chrism of Knowledge
The charism of knowledge could just as well be called the passion to learn. Those gifted with this charism possess an unmatched passion for seeking and acquiring intellectual knowledge, but not knowledge for its own sake, but knowledge and learning to be shared. As such, those empowered with this gift are usually given other charisms to help them share their knowledge with others: teaching, writing, prophecy, encouragement and/or leadership. The marks of this charism is an insatiable desire to learn and the equally insatiable desire to share this knowledge ( in helpful ways) with others.